Hearty And Flavorful Meatballs (No Breadcrumbs Needed!)

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Craving juicy, flavorful meatballs but avoiding breadcrumbs? Look no further! This recipe delivers all the classic comfort food feels, minus the filler. Packed with protein and customizable with your favorite spices, these versatile bites are perfect for countless meals.


Meatballs without Breadcrumbs
Meatballs without Breadcrumbs

1 pound ground beef (or any ground meat of your choice)

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley (or ½ tablespoon dried parsley)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  • Optional Seasonings:

    ¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning

  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano

  • Instructions:

    1. Combine the Dry Ingredients: In a large bowl, combine the Parmesan cheese, onion, garlic, parsley, salt, and pepper.

    2. Incorporate the Wet Ingredients: Add the ground meat, beaten egg, and olive oil to the dry ingredients. Use your hands to gently mix everything together until well combined. Avoid overmixing, which can make the meatballs tough.

    3. Shape the Meatballs: With wet or oiled hands, scoop out portions of the meat mixture and roll them into balls. Aim for a uniform size, roughly 1-inch in diameter.

    4. Cooking the Meatballs: There are three ways to cook these delicious meatballs:

    Pan-frying: Heat a large skillet with olive oil over medium heat. Add the meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until browned and cooked through (about 10-12 minutes).

    Baking: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the meatballs on the baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through.

    Simmering: In a large saucepan, heat your favorite marinara sauce or broth over medium heat. Gently add the meatballs and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through and the sauce has thickened slightly.

    5. Serving Suggestions: Enjoy your delectable meatballs on their own as an appetizer, nestled in a bed of marinara sauce over pasta, tucked into a hearty sub roll, or incorporated into a flavorful stir-fry.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving, approximately 2 meatballs):

    Calories: 250

  • Fat: 18g
  • Saturated Fat: 8g
  • Cholesterol: 70mg
  • Sodium: 350mg (depending on added sodium in ingredients)
  • Carbohydrates: 2g
  • Protein: 22g

  • Please note: This is an approximate nutritional value based on the ingredients listed. The actual values may vary depending on the specific brand or type of ingredients used.


    These easy-to-make, protein-packed meatballs are a fantastic way to enjoy a classic comfort food without breadcrumbs. The customizable seasonings allow you to personalize the flavor profile to your liking, making this recipe a versatile addition to your meal rotation.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1. Can I use a different type of ground meat?

    Absolutely! This recipe works well with ground turkey, chicken, lamb, or a combination of different meats. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time slightly depending on the chosen protein.

    2. What substitutes can I use for Parmesan cheese?

    For a dairy-free option, you can use nutritional yeast or finely grated vegan cheese alternatives. Grated Romano cheese or Asiago cheese can also be used for a slightly different flavor profile.

    3. How can I keep the meatballs moist?

    Using lean ground meat can sometimes result in drier meatballs. To prevent this, try adding a tablespoon of milk or mashed avocado to the meat mixture. Additionally, avoiding overcooking the meatballs is crucial for maintaining their juiciness.

    4. How can I reheat leftover meatballs?

    Leftover meatballs can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat them gently in a skillet with a splash of broth or marinara sauce over low heat until warmed through.

    5. Can I freeze these meatballs?

    Yes, you can definitely freeze uncooked meatballs. Form the meatballs and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Freeze for about 30 minutes to flash freeze them, then transfer them to a freezer bag. Frozen meatballs will last for up to 3 months. Thaw them completely in the refrigerator before cooking.